NEW YORK - July 10 - The Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign, a leading advocacy group for the poor and disenfranchised, will stage a National Truth Commission in Cleveland Ohio from July 15th – 20th, 2006, to shine a light on the status of poor people in the United States. The Commission designed after the truth commissions of South Africa, El Salvador and elsewhere, will provide a platform for poor and working people from around the country to tell their stories of economic human rights violations first hand. A panel of local, state, national and international leaders will serve as commissioners to hear testimonies and draw findings at the conclusion of the event. A report summarizing the Commission’s testimony and findings will also be published following the event.
Among the twenty Truth Commissioners will be Winnie Mandela the former First Lady of South Africa, and Dr. Arjun Sengupta, Independent Expert on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights for the High Commission on Human Rights of the United Nations and a member of Indian Parliament.
Those testifying will include homeless families, internally displaced Katrina survivor, former Tenncare enrollees and others who are without health insurance, immigrants of all backgrounds, public housing tenants, artists and musicians, Iraq war Veterans and their families, the deaf and deaf-blind, farmers and farm-workers. Witnesses will represent every region of the country and people of diverse ethnic backgrounds.
The event will take place outdoors at Lincoln Park (W. 14th Street & Starkweather). Local churches will provide housing for many of the poor families who will be traveling to the event.
The Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign is committed to uniting the poor across color lines as the leadership base for a broad movement to abolish poverty. Through advancing economic human rights as named in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, such as the rights to food, housing, health, education, communication and a living wage job, the Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign is committed to uniting the poor as the leadership base for a broad movement to abolish poverty everywhere and forever.